The British East India Company came to India as a trader, but socio-political conditions of Indian subcontinent drives them to become ruler. This resulted in the need of subordinates and to achieve this goal, they instituted a number of acts to pour Indians into English colour through the education system. Here, we are giving “Summary of the History of Modern Education during British India” which can be used as a revision capsule for upcoming competitive exams.
Summary on the History of Modern Education during British India
1. Warren Hastings set up the Calcutta Madrasa in 1781 for the study and learning of Persian and Arabic. In 1791, the efforts of Jonathan Duncan opened Sanskrit College at Banaras for understanding of the laws, literature and religion of the Hindus.
2. The Fort William College was set up by Lord Wellesley in 1800 for the training of the civil servants of the company in vernacular languages and customs of India. The College published an English-Hindustani dictionary, a Hindustani grammar and some other books. However to impart training to civil servants a East India College at Hailebury, England was established in 1807.
3. Charter Act, (1813): It provided for an annual expenditure of one lakh of rupees "for the revival and promotion of literature and the encouragement of then learned natives of India and for the introduction and promotion of knowledge of the science among the inhabitants of the British territories."
4. Sir Charles Wood's Despatch on Education, 1854: It is considered as the Magna Carta of English Education in India. It declared that the aim of the Government's educational policy was the teaching of Western Education. The three universities of Calcutta, Madras and Bombay came into existence in 1857. It proposed the setting up of primary schools (vernacular languages) at the lowest level, high school in Anglo vernacular and colleges (English Medium) at district level.
5. The Hunter Education Commission, 1882-83: The principal object of the enquiry of the commission was to present the state of elementary education throughout the Indian Empire and the means by which this can be extended and improved.
6. The Indian Universities Act, 1904: The act increased university control over private colleges by laying down stringent conditions of affiliation and periodical inspection by the Syndicate. The private colleges were required to keep a proper standard of efficiency. The Government approval was necessary for grant of affiliation or disaffiliation of colleges.
7. The Sadler University Commission, 1917-19: It recommended a twelve-year school course after passing the intermediate examination, rather than the Matriculation, the students were to enter a university.
8. Wardha Scheme of Basic Education: The main principle of basic education (better known as Wardha Scheme) is 'learning through activity'. The Zakir Hussain Committee worked out the details of the scheme and prepared detailed syllabi for a number of crafts and made suggestions concerning training of teachers, supervision, examination and administration.
9. Sargeant Plan of Education: This plan envisaged the establishment of elementary schools and high schools (junior and senior basic schools) and the introduction of universal free and compulsory education for children between the ages of 6 and 14.
The British Modern Education was injected in Indian society not for education but to imparting Christianity to the people and creating a class of Anglo-Indian.